One of the things I love about living in Toronto, is that somehow winter doesn’t seem that bad. Eastern Ontario is the WORST in the winter. When I went home for the holidays it snowed every single day. Not just a few flakes here or there – full on snow! Inches upon inches of the fluffy stuff. Since living in the big city, winter really hasn’t been that bad. We get the cold windy air and a few centimeters of snow, but I find it quite manageable. Those born and raised in Toronto probably disagree with me, but you people don’t know winter until you spend a few chilly months in Ottawa.
No matter where you live in the cold winter months, nothing is better than a big bowl of soup or stew to warm you up. Tonight’s dinner wasn’t either, but it did the trick (I actually burnt my tongue because I was so excited to eat it). Sloppy Joes were a staple in my house growing up. We’d pile sloppy joe hamburger mixture on top of our buns and inhale them like it was our last meal. The funnest part about them was, obviously, how sloppy they were. I don’t think my sister ever made it past a sloppy joe meal without covering her shirt in thick tomato sauce. This recipe was adapted from Chef Chloe’s Hawaiian Sloppy Joes and it is just as sloppy as I remember!
Sloppy Veg n’ Lentil Joes
Adapted from Chef Chloe’s Hawaiian Sloppy Joes
Makes 6 servings
- 1 tbsp coconut oil
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 1/2 yellow pepper, chopped
- 1/2 red pepper, chopped
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 3/4 cup mushrooms, diced finely
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp all spice
- 1/2 cup dry lentils or 1 can lentils
- 1 can tomato sauce (14 oz)
- 1/4 cup soy sauce
- 3 tbsp packed brown sugar
- 1 tbsp cider vinegar
- 1/2 cup pineapple, chopped
- 6 buns (for this recipe I didn’t use GF buns but you can buy GF in the freezer section of your grocery store)
- Toppings – avocado, lettuce, tomato, spinach (optional)
1) Cook lentils according to package directions. If using canned lentils, drain and rinse. ** I cooked my lentils: 1/2 cup lentils, 3 cups water – medium-high heat for about 25 minutes (I like them soft).
2) In a large saucepan on medium heat, add oil. Once heated, add the onion and peppers. Saute for 5-7 minutes until onions are translucent and peppers are soft. Add mushrooms, garlic, salt, and all spice and continue to heat for 5 minutes.
3) In a bowl, mix together the tomato sauce, soy sauce, brown sugar, vinegar, and pineapple. Add mixture to the saucepan with vegetables and add lentils. Let simmer, uncovered for 10 minutes. Remove from heat and cover for 10-15 or when ready to serve (this will allow the flavours to mingle and the mixture to thicken).
4) Scoop a generous am of sloppy joe mix on buns. I added a few slices of avocado to mine but you can also add lettuce, tomato, or spinach if you want.